The revised practical guide aims at helping all stakeholders to find their way into the different existing EU funding supporting research and innovation: The 7th Research Framework Programme; The Competitiveness and Innovation Framework Programme (CIP); The Structural Funds.
This new edition includes a full up-to-date picture of the three sources of funding described in the initial Guide (7th Research Framework Programme, Competitiveness and Innovation Framework Programme and Structural Funds) completed by information on the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development and on the European Fisheries Fund. It also focuses on additional funding opportunities in the field of research and innovation. It includes information on the Lifelong learning programme and international cooperation in the field of education and on LIFE + in the field of the environment. It also describes the research and innovation funding opportunities offered to countries and territories beyond the European Union, in the framework of Pre-accession Assistance and within the European Neighbourhood and Partnership Instrument. Download the New Practical guide to EU funding opportunities for research and innovation.
4. The role of national and regional authorities
The implementation of the five funding instruments usually involves different administrative levels and authorities. The responsibility for the implementation of the Structural Funds often lies with regional authorities, while participation in the programming and monitoring for FP7 and the CIP lies with the national/central/federal authorities. In addition to this multi-level governance structure, the responsibilities are often spread over different departments: for the Structural Funds and the CIP it is often the economics/enterprise/industry administrations that are in charge, while for FP7 it is normally the research/science administrations.
National and regional policy makers and administrations have a central role in ensuring the effective exploitation of the potential for synergies between FP7, the CIP and the Structural Funds through the establishment of mechanisms for these authorities to act in a co-ordinated manner.
National and regional governments should develop smart specialisation strategies to maximise the impact of Regional Policy in combination with other Union policies. Indeed, to have most impact, R&D and innovation resources need to reach a critical mass and to be accompanied by measures to increase skills, education levels and knowledge infrastructure (Source: Commission Communication on Regional Policy contributing to smart growth in Europe 2020, COM(2010)553).
Pursuing a broad concept of innovation, both research-driven innovation and innovation in business models, design, branding and services that add value for users and where Europe has unique talents. The creativity and diversity of our people and the strength of European creative industries offer huge potential for new growth and jobs through innovation, especially for SMEs.
Involving all actors and all regions in the innovation cycle: not only major companies but also SMEs in all sectors, including the public sector, the social economy and citizens themselves (‘social innovation’); not only a few high-tech areas, but all regions in Europe and every Member State, each focusing on its own strengths (“smart specialisation”) with Europe, Member States and regions acting in partnership. The Commission therefore strongly encourages Member States to improve the arrangements for cross-departmental and vertically co-ordinated preparation and use of Community instruments to support research, innovation and cohesion at the national and regional levels. The recommendations made in the Communication “Competitive European Regions through Research and Innovation”, mentioned in the Introduction to this Guide, are essential for the creation of the necessary synergies on the ground.
Although it is always necessary, when discussing the three funding sources, to bear in mind their different policy objectives (as explained in Annexes 1 to 3), the conditions are at the moment very favourable for their complementary use, due to the fact that:
— In the 2007-2013 programming period the time frame of the funding schemes is the same, although the budget, methods and timing for allocating the funds to concrete implementing measures differ substantially.
— The Structural Funds are increasingly emphasising the role of research and innovation as a crucial factor for regional development. With the Lisbon Strategy and the strategic guidelines on cohesion (Council decision of 6 October 2006 on Community Strategic Guidelines on cohesion; 2006/702/EC) this emphasis has been reinforced. The importance of innovation is also highlighted in the Community strategic guidelines for rural development for the period 2007-2013 (Council decision of 20 February 2006 on Community Strategic guidelines for rural development 2007-2013; 2006/144/EC).
— FP7 has been increasingly taking the role of the national and regional levels into account.
In FP7, the regional dimension is more important compared to FP6. Under the CIP, key actors from all EU regions are involved in projects and in the Enterprise Europe Network, which consists of about 600 business centres all around the EU and beyond that provides business and innovation support services to enterprises.
— In comparison to the previous programming period, the new Structural Fund Operational Programmes are more strategic and open to experimenting with new funding methods that make it possible to set up within the approved programme priorities new innovation support schemes for enterprises and researchers, beyond the more infrastructure-oriented investments in the previous funding periods.
— Contrary to the previous programming period, the new Rural development programmes are independently implemented, with a particular strategic focus towards agricultural competiveness, win-win agri-environmental measures and support for the wider socio-economic business environment, which makes possible the funding of innovative projects.
— Economic exploitation of research results. Activities supported by FP7 and its predecessors lead to the production of knowledge and successful projects offer potential for commercial exploitation. There is an obvious possibility for using the Structural Funds, as well as some CIP instruments, for financing the development phase of successful research projects that have been financed under FP7.
— Trans-national cooperation. While transnational cooperation is one of the core ideas in the CIP and FP7, the bulk of Structural Funds spending is within specific Member States and regions. Nevertheless, Cohesion policy also provides opportunities to contribute to transnational cooperation, notably through the European Territorial Cooperation Objective (previously known as INTERREG), a specific part of the Structural Funds that supports the development of cross-border, inter-regional or trans-national cooperation, in particular through networking. Such possibilities are also offered by rural development policy, especially in the area of the Leader initiative (see http://ec.europa.eu/agriculture/rur/leaderplus/index_en.htm). Transnational and interregional actions are also well embedded within the 2007-2013 national and regional Operational Programmes of the European Social Fund (ESF-see Art. 8 of Regulation No 10812006 of 5 July 2006. For further information see http://ec.europa.eu/esf/main.jsp?catId=56&langId=en and www.transnationality.eu) which provide support for transnational exchange and cooperation:
— in all policy areas identified for ESF interventions, such as adaptability, labour market policies, social inclusion, human capital and strengthening public administration;
— for all types (strategic stakeholders such as social partners, NGOs, training and regional development organisations, public administrations, ESF management bodies, beneficiaries, participants in projects) and levels of actors, and
— for all types of exchange and cooperation (joint projects; events; focus groups and networks; mobility and exchange of people).
As a result, Member States and regions, in their Operational Programmes under the ESF 2007-2013, plan to use 2.5% (€3 bn) of the programme budgets for transnational cooperation. Of this amount, €1.24 billion is earmarked for transnational cooperation as dedicated priority axes in 47 of the 116 operational programmes.
One of the innovations in the 2007-2013 programming period is the creation of a new legal entity. The ‘European Grouping of Territorial Cooperation’ (EGTC) facilitates cooperation between regions and enhances their capabilities to develop and implement common projects focusing on growth and competitiveness. Besides providing a legal personality for the management body of trans-national Structural Fund projects, it can also be used for instance for managing multi-country research infrastructures.
In practical terms, communication and information are the most important preconditions for fostering the complementary use of the different funding instruments. In effect, the necessary synergies can only be achieved if the different administrative actors delivering FP7, the CIP and the Structural Funds know about the opportunities offered by the other instruments.
Thus, policy makers and those involved in implementation or dissemination of information most know each other. As a next step, answers to basic questions of the type “What support can FP7/CIP/ Structural Funds/Rural Development Fund offer my region/area of activity?” must be widely and readily available. Databases of projects financed by the different funding sources should also be available to all concerned. In addition, the formal monitoring structures for the different instruments (Monitoring Committees for the Structural Funds and the Rural Development Fund, and Programme Committees for FP and CIP) should establish regular and up-to-date information flows. This means that the relevant authorities should ensure that the national representatives in the FP7/CIP Programme Committees regularly provide information to the Structural Funds Monitoring Committees of their countries, and vice-versa. Finally, it is of course the particular responsibility of the Member States and regional authorities to prevent irregularities such as double financing and unauthorised co-financing with another Community instrument. When such abuses are discovered, it is normal to proceed with financial penalties.
Some examples of the possible role of national and regional authorities for combining the different instruments
The Commission services are exploring, with Member States and regional authorities, how far the co-funded programmes can provide financial support to FP7 for the construction of research infrastructure foreseen in the ESFRI Roadmap, projects under the FP7 Research Potential action which were positively evaluated but could not be funded due to lack of resources.
The potential impact of these projects on the regional economy should be demonstrated, for instance: partnership with innovative industries, large companies, SMEs and start-ups; links with innovative incubators for the creation of spin-offs. The Commission has recently produced a ‘Smart Guide to
Innovation-Based Incubators’ for regional policy makers.
A further possibility is for Member States and regions to adopt best practices from the management of FP7 projects and, through the use of international peer review, to identify funding priorities for research and innovation in EU Regional Policy programmes. Download the New Practical guide to EU funding opportunities for research and innovation.
Report of the Expert Group “International Cooperation in Science, Technology and Innovation: Strategies for a Changing World”
The European Commission has published its Report “International Cooperation in Science, Technology and Innovation: Strategies for a Changing World” to support the further development of an EU international STI cooperation strategy. Due to a changing global landscape, EU STI policies are fragmented. A more strategic European Framework which focuses on global challenges and thematic priorities is required to increase coherence as well as to ensure sufficient resources and funding. Download The Report of the Expert Group - International Cooperation in STI.
Conclusions and key policy recommendations
Pulling all elements of the present analysis together, it is clear that Europe finds itself at a crossroads: Fundamental changes in the global research and innovation landscape are taking place. The increasingly pressing global challenges urgently require a strategic and forward looking response at EU level. Hence, the overall recommendation is to develop
1) A strategy with a focus on strengthening European attractiveness as international research and innovation hub and partner in order to strengthen European competitiveness and prosperity
Europe needs to get at the forefront of international collaboration in STI by making it the place to be for international researchers and non-EU MNEs. Secondly, the EU must provide their stakeholders an infrastructure to expand to other regions into the world and help universities, SMEs in particular to reach out to those markets in selected themes addressing the grand challenges of the next decades.
Only few countries have so far developed an integrated policy strategy. In the US and the UK the overarching, strategic orientation of policy is to support world-class excellence in science with the aim of generating attractiveness for R&D activities by MNEs. The emergence of China on the global S&T scene is backed by elements of an integrated policy strategy, albeit with strong elements of a planned economy context.
Currently there is a dominance of geographical prioritization through picking countries. This has been especially evident in SFIC. This should change:
2) Theme- and problem-oriented prioritization is needed rather than geographic; Grand Challenges as a clear prioritization tool to be mainstreamed also in the international dimension. Prioritization of international collaboration should follow closely the priorities of the EU’s core research and innovation programmes, while the geographical approach should be the core of an implementation strategy. This also implies that
3) The international perspective needs to be more fully integrated into ’regular’ programmes at EU level
All EU programmes (old and new instruments) should be required to have an international dimension, e.g. through benchmarking and monitoring, identification of relevant partners –and competitors– outside Europe and activities for strengthening cooperation with non-EU partners and/or activities aimed at increasing proximity to relevant markets and users outside Europe. This requires the ability of evaluators and evaluation criteria to valuate and evaluate international partners and collaborations; criteria should be based on complementarities and critical assets for R&D projects.
The EU Framework Programmes are seen as the key vehicle to foster effective international cooperation:
4) Make the Horizon 2020 truly open and attractive to the best and brightest in the world allowing European actors to work with the best brains wherever they are.
International cooperation in STI is impeded by numerous bottlenecks:
5) Strengthen framework conditions for and removal of barriers to international cooperation.
This concerns in particular issues like mobility, standards, IPR, opening national research programmes, simplification of Framework Programme, increasing the competitiveness of European universities, realizing the ERA as a prerequisite to an effective international dimension.
6) Design targeted initiatives for strengthening cooperation in selected (prioritized) areas: these can be multilateral, bilateral, and unilateral. The key criteria should be achieving benefits for European stakeholders.
The EU should become a stronger international actor in international science and technology fora and in taking the initiative in international science, technology and innovation collaborations through such targeted initiatives.
7) A strong focus on firms and innovation is needed. This has not been properly addressed before and it requires a new/different approach; there are fundamental differences in drivers of international cooperation between academia and industry and between research and innovation. Actions should e.g. be taken along several lines:
• Make Europe the global lead market for innovations to be deployed. Provide the leading Research and Innovation infrastructures for pilots and early adopters.
• Leverage Europe’s diversity in language and jurisdiction to allow for true international products and solutions to be developed that can easily be sold globally.
• Domestic clusters of S&T excellence are an important attractor for innovative companies, R&D institutes and R&D workers from abroad. A strong and vibrant academic and industrial research base, efficient protection of intellectual property rights and a well-trained workforce are major determinants for MNE investment in R&D, but will also promote the growth of domestic enterprises. Hence, such policy measures should be aimed simultaneously at creating favourable conditions for domestic and foreign-owned domiciled enterprises.
• In order to benefit from the internationalisation of R&D, economies should optimize their absorptive capacity and networking with multinational firms.
Among the factors that improve absorptive capacity, two stand out, viz. a high educational level of the local labour force and a well-developed technological capacity of domestic firms.
• Stimulating the development of excellence in local Science & Technology capacities and providing an innovation friendly environment is key to any policy towards R&D internationalisation.
Many countries have not fully recognised the implications of the current internationalisation of STI. In part this is because the full implications are not yet clear, and this is certainly an area in which further research and analysis is required. The increasing mobility of financial resources for STI is accompanied by the increasing mobility of highly skilled scientists and engineers. This has implications not only for education policies, but also for a wide range of policy arenas – tax policies, regulatory frameworks and standards setting, among others. Although many of the instruments needed are already in place in most national and supra national policy levels, they need to be mobilized better to fit into a coherent, systemic policy approach to face the challenges of internationalisation of R&D.
An ambitious strategy for international cooperation will need to leverage the resources and initiatives in the Member States. The Commission should contribute to making the Strategic Forum for International S&T Cooperation (SFIC) a truly high-level and effective body with a capability to engage strategically in this policy field.
8) Variable geometry should be exploited to the full, with flexible arrangements (within EU and with countries outside EU) including multilateral platforms for strategic cooperation. Variable geometry initiatives should also build on lead initiatives by individual Member States that expands their successful bilateral programmes or activities to several European partners.
A credible and effective strategy on international cooperation needs to build on reliable information made available to key prioritization processes. There is a need for more structured information resources:
9) All initiatives must be based on more evidence- or analysis-based decision-making, including forward looking analysis to inform decision making about likely trends and future changes and systematic exchange of experiences. Download The Report of the Expert Group - International Cooperation in STI.
(Wuhan, 4 December 2012) The 7th International Conference on Scientometrics and University Ranking was held in Huazhong Nornal University, Wuhan, China. There were 10 conference reports and 2 forums. Professor Ronald Rousseau, President of ISSI, addressed the latest research on Big data and Informetrics. Professor Chen Daren from Taiwan University described problems in the application of H-index and developed an integrated index to evaluate performance of institutes. Citation network model made by Price in the early years was modified and improved. Also Zipf’s law and some other related topics were presented in the conference. As to the application of Scientometrics theories, Dr. Yue Weiping from Thomson Routers introduced the Consult Service Platform. Some scholars used bibliometrics methods to analyze various aspects of National Natural Science Foundation and National Social Science Foundation. Scientometrics research collaboration and other topics were addressed as well.
Scientometrics theories are widely used in evaluation practice and University Ranking has gained more and more attention worldwide. Chief director Phil Baty from The Times, representatives from Taiwan University and Professor Zhao Rongying from RCCSE addressed their ranking methodology and results on World-Class University Ranking respectively. By comparing the different indicator system and the weight allocation, different insights on World-Class Universities can be obtained. However, as Professor Huang Mu-hsuan concluded, great universities perform well in all aspects. Scholars in the conference also studied evaluation methods on scientific innovation and many other aspects.
The biannual International Conference on Scientometrics and University Ranking provides a communication platform for worldwide scholars and practitioners who are interested in Scientometrics research and University Ranking. It has attracted scholars from five continents and yielded great impact on the development of both the Scientometrics studies and University Ranking practice.
Conference Website: http://icsue.nseac.com/indexE.html.
NTEU Congratulates Australia’s World Class University Researchers
The world class work of Australia’s university researchers was recognised in today’s release of the results of the 2012 Excellence in Research for Australia (ERA) National Report, says the National Tertiary Education Union.
The Report found that the number of disciplines that perform at and above world standard has doubled, and confirmed that the government’s increased investment in competitive grants funding is facilitating world ranking research.
Sounding a note of caution on the ERA however, NTEU National President Jeannie Rea, said that following two comprehensive assessments of university research outputs in 2010 and 2012, it is time to take stock and review the effects the ERA. We need to understand how the ERA is influencing institutional behaviour, the kinds of research being undertaken and the impacts upon research career development.
Rea noted that it was no surprise that the 2012 ERA results demonstrated that research productivity and quality are on the rise with the number of research ‘outputs’ evaluated increasing by 24% since 2010, along with a 5% increase in full-time equivalent staff engaged in research.
“Australia is getting very good value for its investment in university research which is something to celebrate, but we need to be cautious of becoming besotted with ERA itself. It is the quality research that contributes to our future economic and social prosperity, not the instrument for the measurement of research quality.” Rea said.
“A review should also focus upon the capacity of researchers to undertake and pursue research in accordance with the principles of intellectual freedom.” Rea explained.
“The international literature is telling us that there is a point where the efficiency dividends derived from performance-based assessment and funding, such as through the ERA, can only be achieved at the expense of institutional autonomy and intellectual freedom. The danger is that research, in some areas, will be undervalued and discouraged.
“The NTEU is calling for a review and evaluation of ERA’s cost-effectiveness and its broader ramifications for the research community, before the 2015 round.”
Rea said that the NTEU has undertaken a qualitative evaluation of the impacts of the ERA assessment process within universities, the results of which will be released in early 2013.
Jeannie Rea, NTEU National President: 0434 609 531 email@example.com,
Paul Kniest, Policy and Research Coordinator: 0418 170 622 firstname.lastname@example.org.
17th & 18th April, 2013 Star Room, Darling Harbour, Sydney, www.accesstohighered.com.
Driving participation in higher education
Given the upcoming revision of university mission based compacts, this conference will provide a timely opportunity to optimise your access and enrolment strategies.
In order to meet the federal government’s equity and participation targets, it is vital to re-evaluate the ways that new student populations can gain access to higher education.
Customising recruitment, selection and enrolment processes to improve and widen access, is critical.
Benefits of attending:
- Structure pathways for new student populations
- Strengthen your outreach & recruitment strategies
- Develop methods to target distinct student groups
- Improve your selection & enrolment processes
Featuring expert analysis from:
- Jon Beard Director Undergraduate Recruitment & Head of Admissions Office, University of Cambridge
- Emeritus Professor Steven Schwartz Former Vice-Chancellor, Macquarie University
- Professor Richard James Pro Vice-Chancellor Equity & Student Engagement, University of Melbourne
- Professor Steven Larkin Pro Vice-Chancellor of Indigenous Leadership, Charles Darwin University.
Inviting all those active in the field, both from academia and practice, to jointly share knowledge and open up discussions on the interaction between industry and universities.
The conference will be an international discussion forum for researchers and practitioners evolving around topics such as knowledge transfer, entrepreneurship, intellectual property, the entrepreneurial university, innovation and university-business cooperation.
We are now calling for abstracts for papers, presentations, workshops, tracks and posters on the themes of the conference. We would like to encourage you to submit abstracts of conceptually or empirically focused proposals as well as insights from industry. All papers will be double-blind reviewed and published in the conference proceedings. In addition, all papers compete for publication in one of the associated journals.
The abstracts can be submitted till the 17th of December 2012. For more information please visit the call details page.
We look forward to welcoming you in Amsterdam!
Fraud, regrettably, can come from within your admissions office. Some examples of inside fraud include an incident at Touro College, New York City where several office officials accepted bribes from students to alter grades, and sold university diplomas and records to non-students. This fraud was reported, investigated, and involved students and outside ‘buyers’, with several degrees being rescinded, and several employees being arrested and convicted.
Another incident occurred at Southern University, Baton Rouge, LA. For eight years, an admissions officer was paid by students to change 541 grades, and alter their records. Best estimates are that over 2500 individual grades were affected. Degrees to 10 persons were revoked, 27 more lost credits, and institution employees were arrested. Read more...
The benchmarking workshop takes place at the University of Tasmania (UTAS) and will bring together leading academics from Newcastle University, the University of Leicester, the University of Wollongong and UTAS.
The four institutions involved will be able to share information on and compare promotion policies and processes, as well as staff perceptions of promotion. It will develop a benchmarking framework to be shared at the Universities Australian Higher Education Conference in Canberra in February 2013 and at a UK conference in April.
Professor David Sadler, UTAS' Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Students and Learning), said: "This project builds on a HEA report in 2009 on reward and recognition and internationally recognised work at the University of Wollongong.
"The process includes the development of a self-review template with performance indicators and measures which can be applied across the higher education sector, national and internationally.
"The ultimate aim is to produce the resources to underpin the recognition of teaching as core to the assurance of standards in higher education."
Dr Jeanne Keay, Head of International Strategy at the Higher Education Academy, said: "Recognition of teaching excellence is at the heart of the HEA's work and the opportunity here to share our experience and learn from other models is important in taking a dynamic approach to further developing promotion policy and practice."
Professor Annette Cashmore from the University of Leicester is the UK project leader and Dr Chris Cane (Leicester) and Professors Stephen McHanwell and Sue Robson (Newcastle University) are also team members.
The external evaluator is Dorothy Whittington, Emeritus Professor, University of Ulster.
Seven UK and eight Australian universities are represented on the two international advisory groups. The UK international advisory group includes the HEA's Dr Jeanne Keay, Prof Gavin Brooks (University of Reading), Prof Mick Healey (Gloucestershire), Prof Janice Kay (Exeter), Prof Dai Hounsell (Edinburgh), Prof Allison Littlejohn (Glasgow Calendonia University) and Prof Nick Lieven (Bristol).
The LifeLong Learning Week is now over and EUCIS-LLL wishes to deeply thank all its members for organising and attending its events as well as all participants for their presence and contribution to the discussions. Staffan Nilsson, EESC President, reminded the importance of lifelong learning and of civil society at our cocktail reception. This year’s edition took place from 26-29 November 2012 under the title: “Rethinking skills: A civil society perspective”. Find the pictures of all events as well as the presentations online!